Many education officials insist that Critical Race Theory is not being taught in K-12 schools, but two scholars considered to be among the founders of the CRT legal subdivision once marveled at its growing influence in education.
Richard Delgado and his wife, Jean Stefancic, both professors at the University of Alabama School of Law, said in a 2010 interview with a legal journal that promoters of CRT have “found a natural affinity in education,” the Daily Caller reported.
“Seeing critical race theory take off in education has been a source of great satisfaction for the two of us,” Delgado said in the article in the winter 2010 edition of “Transnational Law & Contemporary Problems,” a multi-disciplinary legal journal at the University of Iowa.
“Critical race theory is in some ways livelier in education right now than it is in law, where it is a mature movement that has settled down by comparison,” he said.
Delgado condemned concepts in education such as “race neutrality and color-blindness,” claiming teachers don’t treat their students equally.
CRT emerged in legal scholarship during the 1980s, the legal journal said, as a “framework to analyze and understand how race and America’s racial history shape American law.” The article said CRT has “taken root” in other disciplines such as sociology and education.
Delgado referred to the founders of CRT as “a bunch of Marxists,” noting a founding conference on CRT scholarship in 1989 at the University of Wisconsin drew dozens of legal scholars.
He described the university as “a center of left academic legal thought.” Many who attended the conference went on to become prominent critical race theorists. Among them are Kimberlé Crenshaw, a Columbia Law School professor who developed the theory of intersectionality.
‘That’s a lie’
In Washington state, the superintendent of public instruction, Chris Reykdal, contends critical race theory isn’t being taught in Washington schools.
But that’s “a lie,” says Seattle talk-radio host Jason Rantz.
In an interview on KIRO Radio’s “Gee and Ursula Show,” Reykdal replied “no” to the question of whether or not CRT was being taught in Washington schools.
“We talk about the Civil Rights Movement. We talk about the causes of the Civil War, we talk about the experiences of black Americans, of white Americans,” he said. “It’s comprehensive history, but it’s not critical race theory.”
The outrage over CRT, as seen in school board meetings nationwide, is “manufactured rage for political purposes,” the education chief insisted.
“It’s a catchall now for every sort of angry thing that people want to throw out there, and unfortunately, has nothing to do with our actual learning standard or anything that the Legislature in this state has passed for what we teach,” Reykdahl said.
But Rantz contends the state superintendent is playing a semantics game. While the academic discipline of CRT isn’t being taught in our schools, he argues, the concept of CRT is taken as fact.
Teachers, Rantz argued, are “using the CRT lens to frame lesson plans.”
Instead of critical race theory, they use softer language such as “culturally responsive teaching,” “diversity and inclusion,” “unconscious bias” and “equity.”
“But it all connects to the same CRT concept. And the intent of new statewide mandates for staff training is based on CRT,” he wrote.
He pointed to concepts in the training of teachers in the Highline School District, south of Seattle. Staff are taught, for example, that race is a “social construct” and American institutions were “designed” to oppress people of color.
The training even covers Crenshaw’s “intersectionality” theory, which holds that people are disadvantaged by multiple sources of oppression, including race, class, gender identity, sexual orientation and religion.
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